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Army business initiative council recommendations (Sept. 14, 2004).

Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army (Financial Management and Comptroller) Ernest Gregory, chair of the Army Business Initiative Council (ABIC), reported in a Sept. 14 memorandum to principal officials of Headquarters, Department of the Army, on 52 initiatives reviewed by the ABIC Board of Directors for Cycle 8. The board recommended 18 initiatives for implementation within the Army or in conjunction with OSD and the other Services; determined that 18 initiatives were already in play; recommended that nine not be accepted for implementation; and recommended that seven be deferred pending further work.

The completed list of Cycle 8 approved initiatives follows:

RECOMMENDED FOR ARMY IMPLEMENTATION

Divest of Low Dollar Value Government Property in Possession of Contractors: This initiative seeks to establish management processes or policies to divest government furnished equipment with an acquisition cost of less than $5,000 by giving the contractor the option to purchase the goods from the government or another source. Currently the Army does not maintain property accountability for items costing less than $2,500. However, contractors must account for all GFE, regardless of the dollar value.

Improve Communication with the Acquisition Workforce: This initiative recommends establishing an integrated process team to address the concerns of, and provide support for, the acquisition workforce. The IPT will seek to revise or implement any guidance and policy changes to improve communication within the professional acquisition community and facilitate the way ahead.

Develop an Overarching Policy or Procedure to Leverage Sources of Advanced Technology: This initiative seeks to improve the transfer of technology between the National Laboratories and the Army by working with the Department of Energy to determine how to make the current process work more efficiently. Current business practices call for development and approval of a determination and findings statement for each and every transfer.

Evaluate Low-Cost Retrofitting to Accommodate Standardized Batteries: This initiative recommends evaluating legacy equipment for retrofitting to accept the best battery options or substitutions without adverse effect on equipment performance, maintenance, or life cycle costs. The intent is to reduce the number of different batteries required to be stocked in inventory, which, in turn, will help reduce the logistics tail.

Establish an Acquisition Program Baseline for International Activities: This initiative recommends improving the visibility of program management activities by creating an acquisition program baseline for international programs. The APB will evaluate cost, schedule, and performance of foreign military sales systems acquisitions and include international programs in the Acquisition Information Management System. Separate methodologies and processes for determining cost, schedule, and performance of FMS acquisitions from domestic acquisition programs have limited the visibility of FMS systems acquisition data, impeding the Service acquisition executives' ability to make informed decisions.

Establish the Logistics Engineering Institutional Effectiveness Program: This initiative continues an effort between the Logistics Transformation Agency and the Combined Arms Support Command to develop and prototype processes that apply strategic business process reengineering methodologies to tactical-level logistics. Commercial industrial engineering sources and industry techniques are being examined for applicability, and those methodologies will assist the transformation efforts to identify, develop, and assess logistics improvement proposals.

Streamline/Consolidate Warehouse Functions and Associated Furniture: This initiative proposes to streamline/consolidate warehouse functions and furniture maintenance at the Installation Management Agency regional level or higher. Responsibility for replacement furniture is not centralized: Initial issue furnishings for new barracks are centrally funded and managed by the assistant chief of staff for installation management; replacement furnishings are currently managed at the installation level.

Promote Military In- and Out-Processing: This initiative proposes developing a comprehensive communications program that reinforces information on the availability of a newly updated Web-based military personnel in- and out-processing software module. Current in- and out-processing modules have had limited use; the new system is more user friendly and could reduce the number of installation-specific systems.

Share Practices Between Military and Civilian Education Programs: This initiative proposes a review of practices, procedures, and policies within the civilian and military education programs to enhance benefits for students and cost savings by leveraging lessons learned from each component. Sharing of practices between military and civilian Department of the Army education programs could result in enhanced benefits for soldiers and civilians and savings for the government.

Relief from State Sales Tax Paid by A-76 Contractors: The intent of this initiative is to exempt A-76 contractors from paying state sales tax on supplies and material used in performing work for DoD installations. DoD is exempt from paying state sales tax. When an installation, under what is referred to as an "A-76 study," transfers a function from in-house to contract, the contractors who purchase supplies and material to perform the function must pay the state sales tax. This cost is passed on to the government in the contract, the result being a net reduction in DoD's buying power. The initiative will pursue two approaches: In some cases administrative relief will be sought from individual states to exempt A-76 contractors from paying the sales tax, and in other cases installations will purchase the supplies and materials directly and provide them to A-76 contractors as government-furnished material.

Determine and Streamline the Overlap of Functions/Staff in ACSIM, HQ IMA, HQ CSFC, and "G-1 Well-Being": This initiative proposes to review the different organizations with responsibility for well-being functions, which are currently shared among several different organizations. The intent is to identify duplicative functions and/or staff where they exist and propose a means to streamline all of these functions and offices.

RECOMMENDED FOR ACTION ACROSS DOD

Reduce Procurement Lead Time for Non-Commercial Item Acquisition: This initiative seeks to reduce from 15 days to no more than five days the time between publication of the synopsis of a proposed contracting action and the publication of the solicitation to which the synopsis refers.

Revise Guidance that Hinders Outsourcing of Copying Requirements: Existing guidelines require use of the Defense Automated Printing Service (DAPS) for high-speed copying requirements at a non-competitive rate. This initiative seeks to establish a pilot program at a CONUS location to determine if outsourcing of printing requirements is more cost-effective and efficient.

Revise the International Logistics Support Policy: This initiative seeks to permit field commanders to provide limited logistics support to allied nations supporting the United States in combined military operations. This would enhance mission accomplishment and improve international relations. U.S. units are currently prohibited from providing logistics support to troop-contributing nations without an acquisition and cross-servicing agreement.

Revise Acquisition and Cross-Servicing Agreements (ACSA): This initiative would seek authority to expand current legislation to provide a greater degree of flexibility in establishing ACSAs with nations and international organizations. Currently the United States cannot establish an ACSA with international organizations in which the United States is not a member, such as the European Union and the Economic Community of Western African States.

Develop a Common Logistics Operating Environment: This initiative seeks to identify, synchronize, and develop an overarching common logistics operating environment sustainment architecture to include condition-based maintenance, embedded health management, and anticipatory logistics business processes while ensuring current force and future force sustainment system interoperability. Without an overarching architecture, future business processes and emerging systems that would not be compatible with current processes and other emerging logistics systems could be introduced into a theater of operations.

Examine the Intermodal Load Building Requirements: This initiative would examine the distribution system for pallet-sized and smaller loads to optimize platform and container use and reduce repackaging and reconfiguration requirements. The goal is to achieve a holistic approach to multiple capabilities that impact deploy/sustain intermodal distribution operations.

Common Data Bank for Civilian Manpower and Personnel Information: This initiative proposes to introduce civilian manpower structure into the Defense Civilian Personnel Data System (DCPDS) that will result in standardized position-related (manpower) information in a single database and eliminate the manual input process into DCPDS. No single system providing timely and accurate position data currently exists within the Department of the Army.
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Title Annotation:In the News
Publication:Defense AT & L
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2005
Words:1313
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